The Book of Exodus for Beginners: Chapters 22-23
Social Justice Laws
Exodus Chapter 22
1. If a man digs a pit and someone’s animal falls in the pit and dies, the owner of the pit must pay the dead animal’s owner for the loss and must keep the dead animal.
2. If an animal gets in a fight with another animal and kills it, the owner of the animal who killed the other animal must pay the owner of the killed animal and must keep the killed animal. If the animal who killed the other animal is known to kill other animals, that animal must be killed too.
3. If a man is caught stealing and ox, he must pay the owner of the stolen ox with five oxen. If a man is caught stealing a sheep, he must pay the owner of the stolen sheep with four sheep.
4. If a thief is killed in a man’s house during the night, nothing will happen to the man. But if a thief is killed in a man’s house during the day, the man will have to pay for the thief’s death.
5. If a man is responsible for destruction of another man’s field, whether it is from his own cattle or form something else, the man has to give the owner of the destroyed field the best of what he produced from his field.
6. If a fire breaks out and destroys part or the entire field, the person who started the fire has to pay full restitution for the field.
7. If a friend gives his possessions to his friend for safe keeping and a thief comes in the house where the possessions are kept and steals them and is caught, the thief has to pay double the worth of the stolen possessions. If the thief is not caught and runs away with the possessions, the owner of the house has to come before God to see if he stole the possessions or not.
8. If anyone is accused of stealing someone’s possessions, they have to go before God. If they are found guilty of stealing, they must pay double the worth of stolen possessions.
9. If an animal dies or is injured under the care of a friend, and oath between the friend and the owner is made before God to see whether or not the friend is responsible for the damaged animal. If another animal killed the animal, proof of the killing needs to be brought before the owner. If the friend can’t find proof of the killing, the friend has to pay double the worth of the animal.
10. If a man borrows anything from the owner and it gets injured or dies with the owner not being present, the man must pay full restitution for the item(s). If the owner is present during the injury or death of the item(s), the man does not have to pay anything. If the damaged item(s) was hired, the fee of the hired item(s) must be paid.
Social Justice Laws
1. If a man has sex with a virgin who is not married to him, he has to pay the fee for marriage and also marry her. If the father of the woman refuses to give his daughter in marriage to the man who slept with her, the man still has to pay the marriage fee.
2. A woman who is caught doing sorcery must be put to death.
3. Whoever has sex with an animal must be put to death.
4. Whoever sacrifices to any other god, besides the almighty God, will be set for destruction.
5. You can’t mistreat a traveler because you were once a traveler too.
6. You can’t mistreat a widow or a fatherless child or God will set His wrath against you.
7. If you lend money to any of God’s people, you can’t charge interest.
8. If you borrow a cloak from someone, you have to give it back to him or her before the sun goes down because that is the only cloak they have.
9. You can’t revile God or curse a ruler of God’s people.
10. You shall not hold back an offering from the fullness of your harvest.
11. You must give your first born son to God on the eighth day of their life. The first born of your oxen and sheep must be given to God too.
12. You are God’s possession, so you can’t eat any meat that is ravaged by any beast. You have to give the ravaged meat to the dogs.
13. You shall not spread a false report.
14. You shall not team up with a bad man to give witness with evil intent.
15. You shall not team up many bad people to give witness with evil intent, or join in a lawsuit with evil intent.
16. You shall not pervert justice.
17. You shall not be prejudice to or side with a man in a lawsuit just because he is poor.
18. If you find your enemy’s ox or donkey that went astray, you must give it back to him.
19. If you find your enemy’s donkey having trouble in some way, you must find a way to relieve it of its trouble.
20. You must not pervert justice in a lawsuit just because you are dealing with the poor.
21. Stay far away from pressing false charges, and don’t kill the innocent and righteous; God will judge any evil doers.
22. Do not take a bribe because it clouds the judgement of doing right.
23. Do not oppress the traveler; you were once a traveler in the land of Egypt.
Conquest of Canaan is Promised
Exodus Chapter 23
Sabbath and Festival Laws
1. You shall sow your land and gather your harvest from it for six years, but on the seventh year you can’t do anything with it. On the seventh year, the harvest is to be left for the poor and then the wild beasts.
2. You shall work for six days, but you have to rest on the seventh day so your servants and animals can rest too.
3. Keep God’s laws and don’t talk about other gods beside the Lord Almighty God.
4. Three times a year you shall have a feast dedicated to God:
5. The Feast of Unleavened Bread – in the month of Abib, you shall eat unleavened bread for seven days because that is what you did when you came out of Egypt.
6. The Feast of Harvest – You shall feast for God with the first fruits of what you harvested.
7. The Feast of Ingathering – at the end of the year you shall gather all the fruits and have a Feasts for God.
8. All males have to appear before God during the three feasts.
9. During the three feasts, nothing leavened can be offered to God; no fat is allowed to be left over until the morning either.
10. The best of the first fruits from the ground is to be brought in the tabernacle of God.
11. You can’t boil a young goat in its mother’s milk.
Conquest of Canaan is Promised
God told Moses to tell His people that He will send His angel to guide them to Canaan. God told them to obey the angel and to follow the angel’s commands. God told the Israelites that He will clear the way for them to live in the land of Canaan. God would make it so that the inhabitants of Canaan (Amorites, Hittites, Perizzites, Canaanites, Hivites, and Jebusites) would flee from them, but gradually. God told the Israelites that if they obeyed God, He would be the enemy of their enemies.
God told the Israelites that they were not to make covenants with the Canaan inhabitants’ gods or serve their gods. God told the Israelites that they were not allowed to let the inhabitants of Canaan dwell in the land of Canaan or it will be a snare to them. God told His people that He will give them the border from the Red Sea to the Sea of the Philistines, and from the wilderness to the Euphrates for them to dwell in.
An Eye for an Eye: Justice and Mercy for All
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